It's that time of year when the temperature just keeps climbing! Some runners choose to take time off, while others (hello fall marathoners!) have to keep showing up despite the heat. Is it really possible to train effectively through the summer heat and humidity?
It absolutely is!!! It will take a few adjustments, but you CAN continue to crush your training goals. Coach Carola is back with tips on training through heat and humidity
Here are a few tips to help you out:
- SLOW DOWN: I know it's not what you wanted to hear, but it is very important to slow down those summer runs. Heat/Humidity = stress. Added stress will INCREASE the intensity of your run. What does this mean? Your normal pace will require more effort in the heat/humidity. You will need to slow down to make sure you stay in the correct zone. No need to fret, decreasing your pace will not cause you to lose fitness!
- STAY HYDRATED: Make sure you are hydrating both during your run and throughout the day! Higher temps/humidity mean an increase in sweat production. The more fluid lost through sweat, the more fluid you need to replace.
DON'T FORGET ELECTROLYTES: Water isn't all you need. Make sure you are replacing the salt lost when sweating by taking in electrolytes. Drinking large quantities of plain water without replacing electrolytes can lead to hyponatremia.
- RETHINK YOUR TRAINING SCHEDULE/ROUTE: Be selective about when you are running. Do your best to avoid the hottest part of the day. Run in the early morning or later in the evening. If possible choose routes that are shaded.
- WEAR SUNSCREEN: This one should be pretty self explanatory, but we so often forget! Do your future self a favor and take care of your skin.
- RECOGNIZE YOUR LIMITS: We like to think we are invincible and can push through anything, but our bodies have physical limits and our safety is more important than any distance. Heat exhaustion/Heat Stroke are very real, and you should know the signs to watch out for. Listen to your body and stop when necessary.
- BE PATIENT: Don't measure your progress by how much faster your pace is from month to month. Training in the heat can be a humbling process. You need to learn to trust your body and your training. Don't lose sight of the big picture!
Stay safe, stay consistent, and reap the rewards of those fall PR's!!!